I've read, here and elsewhere, where professional or at least
experienced tilers say to use grout in the expansion joints. Or maybe
it's not termed an expansion joint, according to them? Anyway, the
joint where the tile meets the wall, tub, etc.
What's the reasoning on using grout instead of caulk? Aesthetics, I
imagine. But is there not a concern among the pro-grouters about
buckling, or cracking? Or do you simply accept that as a risk and deal
with it when it happens?
I'm no expert, but I had mine buckle last year; oh, what a joy. And
now others are loose. More joy. Personally, I don't think sanded caulk
looks that bad to outweigh the advantage of, at least possibly,
alleviating the buckling. Do I understand the two sides correctly?
Basically I was told if when you purchase your tile they have matching
caulk, to get it but grout the joints. If the grout does pull use the
Most of what I've read said to caulk. Overtime one of more of those
areas will probably crack but could be 1 month or 10 years...
I'm not a pro, but I would always use caulk in the areas where the tile
meets the tub. I think that is most critical, as the tub is likely
going to move more than any other area that the tile abuts, due to temp
chg and weight of water. Plus, those are the areas where will have
the most water, so even hairline cracks can cause big problems. Where
tile abuts say a door threshold, I'd probably go with grout for
When I had to "do" a small amount of bath tile work I saw a pre-mixed
product that claimed to be both grout and caulk.
In came in white and "almond." It seemed to have a lot of latex in it.
It seemed to go a good job. It wasn't cheap: $7 or so for a little less
than a quart.
If you are starting over with a completely new wall and back board, I would
use grout for everything. "Hairline" leaks just don't make any difference
with cement board.
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